The interior fit out of the 200 level of the Studebaker building, a six story building at 615 West 131st Street that houses Columbia University administrative offices, has been certified LEED Silver for Commercial Interiors by the US Green Building Council.
LEED for Commercial Interiors is the green benchmark for certifying high-performance green interiors that are healthy, productive places to work; are less costly to operate and maintain; and have a reduced environmental footprint.
Completed in April 2011, the Studebaker 200 level houses the Columbia University Facilities Manhattanville Development Group, which manages the University's campus expansion into Manhattanville in West Harlem; the Columbia University Finance Office of Internal Audit, which assesses the effectiveness of the internal controls framework devised by the University; and the Sponsored Projects Administration (SPA), which provides guidance and stewardship to researchers and administrators.
The renovation featured water savings fixtures, Energy Star appliances, use of re-claimed furniture, use of low-VOC finishes, and lighting contorls. Approximately 75% of the waste from construction was recycled or diverted, according to project manager Edward McArthur.
The Studebaker building, which was constructed in 1923 as a state-of-the-art Studebaker automobile finishing facility, was renovated in 2007 for adaptive reuse as University administrative offices, and over 800 Columbia employees now work there. Overall building features include energy-efficient mechanical systems, low-flow and auto shut-off restroom fixtures, highly efficient insulated windows, a state-of-the-art fire safety system, soft, energy-efficient lighting and an open, loft-like space with high ceilings (10-13½ feet) and design emphasizing light and views from large, newly installed window. It is one of serveral buildings that will be preserved as part of the University's campus expansion into Manhattanville in West Harlem.